28 January 2013

South Africa: Zuma Must Come Clean - Did He See Nkandla Letter or Not?

The Democratic Alliance has requested access under the Promotion of Access to Information Act, to the full report on President Jacob Zuma's Nkandla ... ( Resource: Democratic Alliance Applies to See Nkandla Report )

press release

I have today challenged President Jacob Zuma to come clean on whether he saw the letter addressed to him by the Department of Public Works (November 2010) outlining the 'security arrangements' developments at his private residence in Nkandla.

I will also submit a series of parliamentary questions to the President in to establish the true extent of his involvement;

If he did see the letter, then he must further clarify why he did not take any steps to address the unnecessarily excessive expenses set out in the letter, including a cattle culvert, tuck shop, helipad, clinic, bunker and tunnel; and whether he accordingly made any enquiries as to their cost;

If he did not see the letter, then he must explain how it is reasonable for the head of the executive to ignore correspondence directed at him by one of his departments, and why he took no active steps to familiarise himself with the details of an upgrade to his own private residence.

This correspondence directed to Mr Zuma clearly contradicts the Minister of Public Works' concerted campaign to prove that the now-secret Nkandlagate Report 'vindicates' him of all wrong doing. Instead of answering key questions about President Zuma's involvement, it targets low-ranking officials in the department. It is a slap in the face of accountability and transparency.

Indeed, this letter now in the public domain, shows Mr Nxesi's assertion that Mr Zuma did not know about the project to be at best, negligent and at worst, intentionally misleading.

South Africans deserve to know the truth. When public money is abused for the unnecessary benefit of a sitting president, it has the potential severely to undermine trust in public institutions in general, and in the government in particular.

Our constitution sets out clearly the ethics and principles upon which our democratic South Africa is founded. It is about time Mr Zuma took these seriously and did what is right: come clean on Nkandla now.

Lindiwe Mazibuko, Parliamentary Leader of the Democratic Alliance

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